Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Freedom of speech deserves an unconditional YES

Alain Finkielkraut, a contemporary French philosopher, writes in Le Figaro from November 27 on the absolute necessity of defending freedom of speech, unconditionally, against all the vile efforts to restrict it which are currently fomenting, especially in fundamentalistic Islamistic circles, but also among some Westerners without the guts to stand up for what is important.

Follow this link to the full article, dealing with the reluctance of some French writers to support one of their colleagues who, after speaking out against attempted Islamistic restrictions on freedom of speech, received death threats and was dismissed from his university chair.

Here, one trenchant excerpt:

La liberté d'expression n'est pas une sinécure. Ce droit de l'homme n'est pas seulement mon droit. L'homme, c'est moi, mais ce n'est pas que moi. L'homme, c'est aussi les autres hommes et leur droit insupportable de dire des choses que je n'ai pas envie d'entendre, des choses qui m'énervent, qui m'effraient, qui me blessent, qui m'accablent, qui m'écorchent vif, qui me font mal. Dans une société ouverte, aucune conviction n'est souveraine, ce qui fait qu'elles sont toutes en colère.

Roughly and quickly anglicized, I would put it thusly:

Freedom of expression is no easy task. This human right is not merely my right. The human is me, but not just me. The human is also all those other humans and their unbearable right to say things I don't want to here, things that bother me, frighten me, wound me, overwhelm me, skin me alive, hurt me. In an open society, no conviction is sovereign, which is why they are all so angry.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Listening In on Tribunals

Though scratchy and of poor quality, hours of audio recordings obtained by National Public Radio provide a glimpse at the Guantánamo Bay tribunal proceedings that affirmed two detainees' classification as enemy combatants. The two men are only allowed to call as witnesses the others with whom they were arrested, and the unclassified evidence presented against them is slim. The tapes, made by the US Navy, also give some idea of the conditions under which the men are held.

With this link to the NPR report, you can also click onto the recordings, listen, and (again) decide for yourself who has no brain! The original NPR broadcast is also audible through a link on this page.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

New Survey: Iraqis Want a Speedy U.S. Exit

Astounding report on a new poll among Iraqis, as reported by Editor & Publisher Staff on November 21, 2006, 10:20 AM ET, should give all interested in democracy building pause to think.
Here the first paragraph from the article:

"Past surveys have hinted at this result, but a new poll in Iraq makes it more stark than ever: the Iraqi people want the U.S. to exit their country. And most Iraqis now approve of attacks on U.S. forces, even though 94% express disapproval of al-Qaeda."

And here is the link to the full piece on the original website.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

You may have to get the news yourself

Reporters Without Borders

Reporters Sans Frontières

--working for freedom of the press everywhere

If we don't have that, you may not ever get to see what some are doing...

...in unending efforts to prevent you from thinking!

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Essential Language

Das Wort
Wunder von ferne oder traum
Bracht ich an meines landes saum
Und harrte bis die graue norn
Den namen fand in ihrem born –
Drauf konnt ichs greifen dicht und stark
Nun blüht und glänzt es durch die mark ...
Einst langt ich an nach guter fahrt
Mit einem kleinod reich und zart
Sie suchte lang und gab mir kund:
›So schläft hier nichts auf tiefem grund‹
Worauf es meiner hand entrann
Und nie mein land den schatz gewann ...
So lernt ich traurig den verzicht:
Kein ding sei wo das wort gebricht.
- - Stefan George

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Playpen still playing with old rattles

Confirming its infantile nature, the playpen-bound Republican faction in the US Senate elected as its Whip the confirmed racist Trent Lott, who was only a short while back booted out of the majority leadership of that "august" chamber for his remarks praising the longtime SC racist Strom Thurmond, on the latter's 100th birthday, with the observation that the country wouldn't have a lot of the problems it does if it had done as the segregationist Thurmond wanted. I suppose there are still enough reactionaries in the Republican party for this refusal to find integration positive to be considered something positive itself.
Babies in playpens have no business governing anyone.
And this playpen daily proves how dangerous it is and how opposed to human rights it remains.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006


> 15 novembre 2006
- Liberté d'expression - Pas de contrôle religieux sur la liberté de création : le délit de blasphème n’existe pas.
[Communiqué LDH]
C’est ce que vient de rappeler la Cour de cassation en cassant l’arrêt de la Cour d’appel de Paris qui avait, le 8 avril 2005, condamné Marithé et François Girbaud pour une publicité inspirée de la « Cène » de Léonard de Vinci.
La Ligue des droits de l’Homme, qui était intervenue devant la Cour pour contredire la demande rétrograde des évêques de France, s’était vue condamnée à leur payer des dommages et intérêts, un comble s’agissant d’une telle question de principe.
La Cour de cassation vient de tenir, dans son arrêt du 14 novembre, son rôle de gardien des libertés fondamentales et des valeurs essentielles, et rappelle aux évêques, qui contestaient à la Ligue des droits de l’Homme qu’elle pût agir en défense des droits de l’Homme, que tel est bien son rôle !
En disant clairement que l’affiche litigieuse est une parodie de forme de la représentation de la « Cène », la Cour de cassation rappelle un principe essentiel de la liberté de création. En disant que cette représentation n’avait pas pour objectif d’outrager les fidèles de la foi catholique, la haute juridiction rappelle que l’iconoclasme n’est pas un délit, et que l’injure prévue par la loi sur la presse vise les discriminations des personnes à raison de leur religion, et non la libre discussion sur le contenu des croyances.
Paris, le 15 novembre 2006

Monday, November 13, 2006

Decide who's a no-brainer

More evidence for the no-brain character of the bushbaby playpen's playmates:
More than 5,000 pages of transcripts of interrogations of Guantánamo detainees were released in March by the Defense Department in response to a lawsuit brought by the Associated Press under the Freedom of Information Act.
Click this link to access the excerpts republished today by Harper's Magazine on its Website, originally in the magazine itself in May, 2006.
Unbelievable, the people they're "protecting" us from by denying them their rights, curtailing ours, and making the US a laughing stock and/or image of injustice around the world

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Get to work

Now that the Democrats have titular control of both houses of the US Congress, Americans (concerned thinking ones) and Europeans (those committed to liberty and justice) are looking forward to advancement in the areas of human rights and application of justice, to more cooperation internationally, fewer attempts at hegemony, and a relighting of the light of freedom that the bushbaby playpen, under the guise of fighting terrorism, has done so much to dim, so that the US may again become one of the countries recognized as bearing the beacon of enlightened democratic concepts of liberty and justice
The world is waiting for the US again to be a partner.
Live up to the challenge, Democrats. The clock is ticking.
Berlin can look like this...

and shouldn't look like this photo of the playpenned US embassy

Saturday, November 11, 2006


Wie Ihr vielleicht schon den Medien entnommen hat, wird die NPD morgen im Fontanehaus im Märkischen Zentrum (Reinickendorf) in Berlin tagen.
Daher haben die BVV-Fraktionen Reinickendorf zu einer Gegenkundgebung aufgerufen, an der Die Grünen sich mit den anderen demokratischen Parteien anschließen.
Also Sonnabend in den Norden fahren:

Die im Abgeordnetenhaus vertretenen Parteien rufen auf zur
Kundgebung gegen die Feinde der Demokratie am
Samstag, 11. November 2006, ab 11.00 Uhr
vor dem Fontanehaus (Märkisches Zentrum)
Wilhelmsruher Damm 142c, 13439 Berlin (Reinickendorf)
S- und U-Bahnhof Wittenau (S1, S85, U8)
von dort alle Buslinien Richtung Märkisches Viertel, Haltestelle Märkisches Zentrum

Zeigen wir, dass die Nazis in Berlin nicht willkommen sind.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Take a look... Remind the Dems to CHANGE THINGS

How America defeated itself in Iraq -- by believing its own spin.

From the non-profit Center for Media & Democracy.


Bush manoeuvering...

Bush à la manoeuvre
LE MONDE 09.11.06
Robert Gates, pas plus que Donald Rumsfeld, ne peut gagner la guerre d'Irak. Pour protéger la renommée du président, sa mission est d'éviter de la perdre dans des conditions humiliantes.
© Le Monde.fr

Guy Debord: Commentaires sur la société du spectacle, Paris, Éd. Gérard Lebovici, 1988 / Éd. Gallimard 1992---
Cette démocratie si parfaite fabrique elle-même son inconcevable ennemi, le terrorisme. Elle veut, en effet, être jugée sur ses ennemis plutôt que sur ses résultats. L'histoire du terrorisme est écrite par l'État ; elle est donc éducative. Les populations spectatrices ne peuvent certes pas tout savoir du terrrorisme, mais elles peuvent toujours en savoir assez pour être persuadées que, par rapport à ce terrorisme, tout le reste devra leur sembler plutôt acceptable, en tout cas, plus rationnel et plus démocratique. [IX]

Wednesday, November 8, 2006

Democrats Control House - Senate Depends on Virginia and Montana

Bye bye playpen; give up your rattle, bushbaby; get ready for hardtimes, playpenalers!
Get to work, Democrats. Live up to what you've been selling folks. Change the US for the better!
Respect the constitution, human rights, civil rights, liberties, freedoms, democracy, equality, and justice!
It's about time!

House: 227 Dem / 195 Rep
Senate: 47 Dem / 2 Ind / 49 Rep
as of this moment.

Tuesday, November 7, 2006

Stop Internet Censorship

24h Against Internet Censorship ... support this action of
Reporters sans frontières .
Reporters without borders organises 24-hour online demo against Internet censorship Help to combat online censorship by taking part!
Everyone is invited to connect to the Reporters Without Borders website (www.rsf.org) between 11 a.m. on 7 November and 11 a.m. on 8 November.

Monday, November 6, 2006

A Fate Worse Than Death...

is my proposal for a hard sentence for Saddam:
Force him to spend all his waking time (but let him sleep 8 hours a night - no cruel or inhuman treatment, please) with the following activities:
watching videos of the most recent Berlin Christopher Street Day Parade;
reading Gore Vidal, Casanova, and Philippe Sollers;
explaining passages from Martin Heidegger's works;
listening to Mozart's operas;
attending multicultural festivals in Baghdad;
identifying one female, preferably lesbian, opinion per day to assume as his own.

This would cause the old puffed up potentate more concern and make him more miserable than a death penalty which he can conceive of as martyrdom with heavenly recompense.
(I'm sure the bushbaby would also opt for death if the above activities posed the only alternatives to it for him to choose from. And you?)

----another fate worse than death (for the USA and the world) would be if the Republicans are allowed to retain a majority in the House of Representatives in the US bi-elections tomorrow!
But their continued misgovernment would certainly be a welcome relief to Saddam H!

Saturday, November 4, 2006

Your More Secure World - by the bushbaby playpen

Not only has the New York Times reported the story, the world press is enjoying more evidence of the incompentence of a US administration curtailing rights and bombing countries for protection against terrorists while itself providing instructions for anyone on how to kill us all...

This time, the playpen published documents online on how to construct nuclear weapons (albeit only "a small atomic bomb") on a Web site intended to be used to make a vast archive of Iraqi documents captured during the war available to the public. The plans were placed online in March; the site was shut down November 2 after the NYTimes questioned Negroponte's office (Director of National Intelligence) about complaints from arms-control officials to the newspaper. All information will now be "reviewed" before putting the site back online --- though this was already required by the law for publishing the documents!

This is the link to the NYT article.

Here, some links to world press reactions:

This is what the Berliner Zeitung reports.
Les Etats-Unis ont publié la recette de la bombe atomique, comments Le Figaro.
The Guardian discusses the idiocy here.
And, finally, even PRAVDA cannot comprehend the playpen incompetence.

Thursday, November 2, 2006

No Known Path...

«Im wesentlichen Denken sind keine zum voraus abgesteckte Pfade. Erst dort, wo es fährt, ist ein Weg; und sein Fahren ist die Er-fahrung des Seyns. Und der Weg hinterläßt kaum eine Spur.»
[MH: GA Bd.69, Geschichte des Seyns, §172, S.170]

»There are no paths staked out in advance for essential (ownmost, utmost) thinking. Only where it passes is there a route; and its passing is the encom-passing of Being. And the route leaves hardly any trace behind.«
[my own feeble attempt at anglicizing this path of thought]

Black Out - It Sure Isn't Halloween!

American Blackout

Watch the Trailer for GNN's Latest Documentary:
American Blackout Trailer

Directed by GNN’s Ian Inaba, American Blackout chronicles the recurring patterns of voter disenfranchisement witnessed from 2000 to 2004. Told through the life of Georgia Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney who took an active role investigating the scrubbing of the Florida voter roles and then found herself in her own election debacle after publicly questioning the Bush Administration about the terrorist attacks of 9-11. American Blackout travels from Florida to Georgia to Ohio examining the contemporary tactics used to control our democratic process and silence political dissent.

Winner – Special Jury Prize, Sundance Film Festival 2006

Winner – Best Documentary Feature, Cinequest Film Festival 2006

Winner – Stand Up Audience Award, Cleveland International Film Festival 2006

Winner – Special Jury Prize, Independent Film Festival of Boston 2006

Winner – Audience Award, Columbus Alive Deep Focus Film Festival 2006

Winner – Best Documentary Feature, Urbanworld Film Festival 2006
“One of the most important docs of the past several years.” -Earnest Hardy, LA WEEKLY

“Impossible to Ignore” -Jeanette Catsoulis, NEW YORK TIMES
“Engrossing, fast-paced, stylish… a powerful examination of voting rights in America.” -Sura Wood, HOLLYWOOD REPORTER
“…a muckraking indictment of … the systematic disenfranchisement of African American voters…” -Kenneth Turan, LA TIMES

Directed by Ian Inaba
Produced by Anastasia King
Edited by Liz Canning, Jean-Phillipe Boucicault, Ian Inaba
Graphics by Anson Vogt
Music by DJ Shadow, Soulsavers, Thievery Corporation, Michael Bierden, Mark Batson

Wednesday, November 1, 2006

United States Central Command Says Irag Moving Towards Chaos

A slide from the briefing of the Central Command on October 18, 2006, shows that the playpen's military staff don't agree with their bushbaby cheerleader on what's happening in Iraq: